Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Dr Strange

The other night I went to see Dr Strange although I admit I am not a big comic book fan and had never heard of the character before I met Vincent Bridges (who referred to himself as Dr Strange). The film is basically ''Dr House meets Inception'' a producer's wet dream but effectively an empty husk entirely lacking in creativity or risk taking in acting, writing, casting, directing or production design.  Three themes stood out that are worth reflecting on.

1. Gesticulation - the little circles that are made with the fingers by the characters in order to open teleportation portals, summon weapons etc.  Do you use some kind of mudra in your practice?  For many many years I used to imagine I was turning a ships wheel whenever I would turn left or right and when I wasn't in company I made the physical gesture.  I imagined the resistance of the water and that I was some kind of galleon tacking through the ocean*.  Like pictoglyphs becoming letters this gesture became simpler and simpler until it became like the turning of the wheel gesture in Dr Strange.  When through the work on cellular consciousness around 2001 I made the realisation that in the mental universe the world turns around you rather than you turning in the world, I began to use this gesture as a way of embedding that in my consciousness. I wasn't turning the ship anymore I was turning the world.**

2. Astral Projection  - both the mirror dimension and the astral dimension exist and should be being explored by the magicians of today but like the film rapidly eschews astral reality in favour of teleportation portals and OBEs in the ''real world'' (i.e. delusional 3d reality) so has Occulture - those portals being windows on the net. This is probably the deepest loss imaginable for our traditions and is the primary victim of the weapon system known as the internet. The ratio of astral time to FB time is criminally low.  I honestly don't know how many of you have the temerity to call yourself magicians.  The rich tapestry of the astral universe has been replaced by the vacuous tapestry of the web and we are all the lesser for it.

3. Time vs Timelessness - the good-evil axis of the story.  Although this is woefully under-explored in the film in favour of clumsy character building we have to accept that both the 3d world of our physical reality (the one we assume we are in, and the one that most people think they occupy) and the 5d world of our mental reality (the one we are actually in all the time) are both subject to the 4th dimensional progression of time.  Whether you are leaping through teleportation portals or conjuring spirits for Faustian bargains time is going forwards all the time.  In the film the only way out of mortality and entropy is the ''dark dimension'' of timelessness which, after a few rather lame twists, is re-established as the bad guy, pseudo Cthulhu for kids, and which Strange has to pull a Jesus on at the end.  This concept needs closer examination and more metaphysical work.  It appears from conversations with Raziel that most of time is uninhabitable, that 99.9999% of universes or ''probabilities'' are dead and that only those universes/probabilities who converge in the invention of time travel cohere.  Dr Strange at least attempts to explore this paradox but one thing remains crystal clear - the contemporary Western Mystery Tradition is even more lacking in imagination than this comic book film of it.

*Imagining the air around you as either fluid, or a very thick viscous gel will spur understanding of the mental universe and how to make impressions on it.

**37 -Yechidah - ''I am a whisk in a fishbowl''. Another way of looking at it this idea of turning the world is to imagine that you are standing in the middle of your perceptual consciousness in the same way some one might be in the middle of a bathyscaph.  In front of you is a horizontal wheel that comes from a pole through a small platform in the centre of the floor of the bathyscaph. When you turn the wheel the walls of the bathyscaph move but you remain facing forwards, the walls move but the base platform for your feet does not.  Although it is difficult to teleport remote viewing can happen through these portals and the astral can be entered from them.

I know that I live inside a bubble of consciousness, my cell and my temple, which I have never moved from and which has never moved. In embracing loneliness and the paradox of this prison and other paradoxes like it realities have opened to me that I did not think were possible.  I have never looked above my head in the mental reality.  Above my head is the magickal lamp which fills the cell of my consciousness with the mental light that illuminates it.  I can't even move my head, I am permanently fixed facing forward, when I think I move my head to look at another part of my cell, the pixels in front of me are redefined to show something else - the world has turned around me.  I have never seen my back.  Up my spine there runs the magical wand, a psychic current which brings experience from the entire cell to the centre of my ignorance, the centre of my ''head'', the magical brain in its cup. I can't see inside my head.  Another paradox - the only way to see inside that cup is to go out beyond the perceptual bubble. Down my spine runs the magical sword, purging my consciousness of anything I don't want or need to be there, sweating and excreting probabilities.  I have never seen inside my cells where lies the magical pantacle of my karma, the source of experience, each one unfolding itself in the proteins that make my hormones, my mood swings, my pheromonal and bioelectric interactions with others, the cumulative expression of all my ancestor spirits, human and non human - correctly understood all the stuff of thought.

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